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Extra, Extra: Almost Emergencies, Rob Ford and Bill Clinton, and Klingon Politicians

Every weekday’s end, we collect just about everything you ought to care about or ought not to miss.

  • Global News is reporting that Deputy City Manager John Livey initially intended to ask Mayor Rob Ford to declare a state of emergency after the ice storm hit Toronto on December 21—”largely because,” he wrote in an internal email, “it will assist the staff at the Province to make resources available to us, crews, generators, facilities for warming centres.” Deputy Mayor Norm Kelly said today that he assumes City staff ended up deciding against doing so—after the mayor had made it clear he had no intention of issuing such a declaration—”because they felt they had enough resources on the ground at that time.”
  • Yesterday, Rob Ford filed his papers to run for re-election. Today, Ivor Tossell has written an article explaining why it remains possible that Ford will win re-election, and just what our mayor has common with Bill Clinton.
  • What we do not yet have at City Hall (as far as we know) is a politician who is familiar with the Klingon language. Indian Trail, North Carolina, though, has such a politician—we know this because the politician in question, town council member David Waddell, wrote his entire resignation letter in that very language. The town’s mayor apparently dismissed the document as “unprofessional.”

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  • OgtheDim

    The only reason Ford is being talked about as a viable candidate is city politics puts the mayor in a vacuum seal without having to deal with rivals until election time. If this was an official opposition parliamentary democracy style situation, he’d be toast.

    When a viable candidate is put in front of people, and IF said candidate puts the whole of Rob’s history in front of people, then and only then will we know if enough people do or do not want Ford as mayor to make that call about him getting in.

    As has been pointed out by Stintz and Socnacki and DMW, it is possible for those who want to save money, however that is defined, to do so without the Ford drama.

    • HotDang

      those who want to save money

      Except not. See the cancellation of transit city, the police budget, and more far-reaching stuff like preferring the more expensive option of paying for policing instead of reducing the causes of crime. Conservatives talk a big game about saving people money (to get votes) but their policies are always motivated by ideology, not fundage, buddy.

      • OgtheDim

        You do know that it was Thompson who wanted to cut the police budget and got stopped by Ford, right.

        Never assume that all conservatives or all liberals think and act alike.

        • dsmithhfx

          I’m not sure Thompson can be easily categorized, except as an opportunist.

    • mason

      Huh! Elections are always about viable candidates. In this scenario If elections were held today Harper would be re-elected.

    • nevilleross

      Why do we have to be cutting anything at all? Why can’t people accept that these services are necessary for a modern society, and that needs have advanced beyond what was needed a half-century ago? And why can’t people accept that taxes are needed to keep a society going?

      • tyrannosaurus_rek

        Because they’re selfish pricks. “I don’t use the library, why should I pay for it? If you want books, buy them!” is their thinking.

      • vampchick21

        I’ve come to the conclusion that people just don’t actually care enough to understand how government functions and the actual purpose of tax dollars.

  • bobloblawbloblawblah

    Why wouldn’t people vote For Rob Ford? He’s saved the city a bajillion dollars and been the best Mayor ever. Just ask Rob or Doug, they’ll tell you.

  • Jim

    I think the real deciding factor will be if Ford can overcome his personal problems. All (non-ideological) people (which is most of us) like to see redemption and people overcome personal and public adversity. It doesn’t take a genius to see that Ford has already lost a lot of weight and is clean and sober (you can see his clear blue eyes even on tv – everyone is noticing this). His policies and intentions are clear – they are what people want. He is undeniably a leader (Harper can’t say that; Stintz can’t say that, Tory can’t say that; Kelly definitely can’t say that). Ford knows this because he does one thing politians always forget (except Hazel – but she still screwed up transit – and knows it which is credit to her), he listens to the voter, and knows they will support him if he turns around. Odds are that he will.

    • HotDang

      Unless your idea of good leadership is convincing everyone you work with to consistently vote against you, Rob Ford is a terrible leader. He lost control of council years ago, and routinely loses votes 42-2 in council.

      Nice try, Dave from Scarborough, Mr. Astroturf, or whoever you are. Rob Ford shit his bed, and now he has to sleep in it. Enjoy your paycheque.

    • bobloblawbloblawblah

      “He is undeniably a leader……”

      Uh, no he isn’t. In fact most of the time he’s barely able to read the stuff put before him when he’s in a press conference. Leaders have vision not empty slogans(“Stop the Gravy Train” is not a vision). Leaders are able to convince others of the rightness of their cause/ideas. Ford is barely eloquent and resorts to threats and bullying. The man is incompetent and has little idea of how to do his job. I’m sorry, he’s not a leader, he’s a buffoon and people don’t rally around a buffoon.

    • pretzelz

      Except Rob Ford’s actions don’t reflect anything you’ve described.

    • OgtheDim

      ” His policies and intentions are clear”

      Actually, they are not.

      His slogan “Ford more years” is the sort of thing people choose when they don’t know any better. He could have chosen “Help Me Get the Job Done” and would get lots of support because his intentions would then be clear. Instead he’s made this all about him……….which seems to be what he prefers.

      He and Doug and Price (who are now running his election campaign in the absence of Kouvalis and Twohey) are assuming they can just do what they did last time.

      They can’t.


      BTW, if you think Ford hasn’t screwed up transit, well, I invite you to take a bus to where that subway deeper into Scarborough is going to go.

      Nobody goes to those intersections and they are far from dense enough to support things.

      Sounds a lot like the transit mistakes Hazel made.

    • blearghhh

      Leaders get people to follow them. Ford has proved – even before the Crack thing – that he can’t do that.

      He has convinced people that he will do what they want him to do, which is what listening to taxpayers is, and it’s the opposite of leadership. You can argue that the role of the mayor is to follow like that, but you can’t call it leadership.

      He can bully people, he can yell, he can bluster, and importantly he can spend either money or the political capital given to him by his family and the voters, but once that’s gone, he has nothing.

    • tyrannosaurus_rek

      Put down your yellowed copy of the Sun from 2011 and join us here in 2014.

  • torontothegreat

    This thought of “Ford Nation” seems to be extremely exaggerated. We can see how his support has dwindled to almost nothing in the past year. From the attempt to raise money for legal fees (which got a TON of press), his “followers” only donated a total of $3,425, with 74 backers ( to the well-advertised “Rob Ford Laundromat Rally” ( which nobody showed really showed up to.

    Another observation of mine is the intense amount of astro-turfing that seems to have started in the last month or so. The intensity of it, tells me the Ford team is running scared.

    • bobloblawbloblawblah

      I actually didn’t hear of either. I was only aware of the rally when this photo appeared. A rally at a Laundromat seems kinda nutty, especially just before Christmas — no free burgers, no band, why would anyone show? I do like this photo though, there’s something strange and hilarious about it.

      • dsmithhfx

        It’s a throwback to the ’50s, like hizzoner.

        • nevilleross

          That’s an insult to the men who were mayor in the 1950s, especially considering how many of them were (likely) more progressive than this stupid fool.

          • dsmithhfx

            Yeah, perhaps. Point is, Ford’s appeal is all about nostalgia.

      • torontothegreat

        Just because you hadn’t heard of it, doesn’t mean it didn’t happen and if free food, music or booze is necessary for Ford to gain support from his followers, well, that just works to further prove my point.

        • bobloblawbloblawblah

          Oh, I don’t deny it happened. I just hadn’t heard of the events until they happened. But really, only the hardcore supporters would come out to something like this(there would be a lot in Rexdale). Most people want the burgers and t-shirts etc, which is part of the appeal of Fordfest. Not enough to make me want to be in the presence of the Twin Mayors though.

          • torontothegreat

            But that is my point. If only the hardcore would support this man, even the hardcore don’t seem to exist.

            The BBQs and bobbleheads are a reason for people to go and take advantage of something as well as laugh at this idiot. The problem is, Ford sees it as support.

            I’m obviously being very optimistic in my observations, I won’t deny that.

    • Alex

      Rob Who???
      Never heard of him!

  • Scott Bogert

    Better to face minor inconveniences with calm, than to start calling everything an emergency.